IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/idb/brikps/4608.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Distance between Perception and Reality in the Social Domains of Life

Author

Listed:
  • Lora, Eduardo

Abstract

The distance between perception and reality with respect to the social domains of life is often striking. Using survey data collected on Latin American countries, this paper provides an overview of the main empirical findings on the gaps between perception and reality in four social domains--health, employment, the perception of security, and social ranking. The overview emphasizes the psychological biases that may explain the gaps. Biases associated with cultural values are very relevant with respect to health and job satisfaction. Cultural differences across countries are pronounced in perceptions of health, while cultural differences across socioeconomic groups are more apparent with respect to job satisfaction. Affect and availability heuristics are the dominant sources of bias in the case of perceptions of security. The formation of subjective social rankings appears to be less culturally dependent but more dependent on the socioeconomic development in the country. The gaps between objective and subjective indicators in the social domains of life are a rich source of data to help understand how perceptions are formed, identify important aspects of people's lives that do not appear in official indicators, inform public debate on social policy, and shed light on public attitudes on key social issues.

Suggested Citation

  • Lora, Eduardo, 2013. "The Distance between Perception and Reality in the Social Domains of Life," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 4608, Inter-American Development Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:idb:brikps:4608
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://publications.iadb.org/publications/english/document/The-Distance-between-Perception-and-Reality-in-the-Social-Domains-of-Life.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Christian Daude & Eduardo Fernandez-Arias, 2010. "On the Role of Productivity and Factor Accumulation in Economic Development in Latin America and the Caribbean," Research Department Publications 4653, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    2. van Doorslaer, Eddy & Gerdtham, Ulf-G., 2003. "Does inequality in self-assessed health predict inequality in survival by income? Evidence from Swedish data," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(9), pages 1621-1629, November.
    3. Gaviria, Alejandro & Pages, Carmen, 2002. "Patterns of crime victimization in Latin American cities," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 181-203, February.
    4. Frank, Robert H, 1985. "The Demand for Unobservable and Other Nonpositional Goods," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 101-116, March.
    5. Asadullah, Niaz & Fernández, Rosa M., 2008. "Work-Life Balance Practices and the Gender Gap in Job Satisfaction in the UK: Evidence from Matched Employer-Employee Data," IZA Discussion Papers 3582, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Senik, Claudia, 2009. "Direct evidence on income comparisons and their welfare effects," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 408-424, October.
    7. Florencia Lopez Boo & Lucia Madrigal & Carmen Pages, 2010. "Part-Time Work, Gender and Job Satisfaction: Evidence from a Developing Country," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(9), pages 1543-1571.
    8. Fabrice Etilé & Carine Milcent, 2006. "Income-related reporting heterogeneity in self-assessed health: evidence from France," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(9), pages 965-981.
    9. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
    10. Carlos J. Vilalta Perdomo, 2012. "Los determinantes de la percepción de inseguridad frente al delito en México," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 4207, Inter-American Development Bank.
    11. Alesina, Alberto & La Ferrara, Eliana, 2005. "Preferences for redistribution in the land of opportunities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 897-931, June.
    12. Elvire Guillaud, 2011. "Preferences for redistribution: an empirical analysis," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 11030, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
    13. Fabrice Etilé & Carine Milcent, 2006. "Income-related reporting heterogeneity in self-assessed health: evidence from France," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(9), pages 965-981.
    14. Dorrit Posel & Daniela Casale, 2011. "Relative Standing and Subjective Well-Being in South Africa: The Role of Perceptions, Expectations and Income Mobility," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 104(2), pages 195-223, November.
    15. Cruces, Guillermo & Perez-Truglia, Ricardo & Tetaz, Martin, 2013. "Biased perceptions of income distribution and preferences for redistribution: Evidence from a survey experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 100-112.
    16. Carol Graham & Lucas Higuera & Eduardo Lora, 2011. "Which health conditions cause the most unhappiness?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(12), pages 1431-1447, December.
    17. Lindeboom, Maarten & van Doorslaer, Eddy, 2004. "Cut-point shift and index shift in self-reported health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 1083-1099, November.
    18. Eduardo Lora, 2011. "Health Perceptions in Latin America," Research Department Publications 4757, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    19. Carlos J. Vilalta Perdomo, 2012. "Los determinantes de la percepción de inseguridad frente al delito en México," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 78738, Inter-American Development Bank.
    20. Eduardo Lora & Johanna Fajardo, 2013. "Latin American Middle Classes: The Distance Between Perception and Reality," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2013), pages 33-60, August.
    21. Groot, Wim, 2000. "Adaptation and scale of reference bias in self-assessments of quality of life," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 403-420, May.
    22. Eduardo Lora, 2011. "Health Perceptions in Latin America," Research Department Publications 4757, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    23. repec:idb:brikps:publication-detail,7101.html?id=56586 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Clark, Andrew E., 2001. "What really matters in a job? Hedonic measurement using quit data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 223-242, May.
    25. Poggi, Ambra, 2010. "Job satisfaction, working conditions and aspirations," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 936-949, December.
    26. Elvire Guillaud, 2011. "Preferences for redistribution : an empirical analysis," Post-Print halshs-00594072, HAL.
    27. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Experimental Tests of the Endowment Effect and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1325-1348, December.
    28. Pratap, Sangeeta & Quintin, Erwan, 2006. "Are labor markets segmented in developing countries? A semiparametric approach," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(7), pages 1817-1841, October.
    29. Alexandre Mas, 2006. "Pay, Reference Points, and Police Performance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(3), pages 783-821.
    30. Alejandro Gaviria, 2007. "Social Mobility and Preferences for Redistribution in Latin America," Economía Journal, The Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2007), pages 55-96, August.
    31. Christian Daude & Eduardo Fernandez-Arias, 2010. "On the Role of Productivity and Factor Accumulation in Economic Development in Latin America and the Caribbean," Research Department Publications 4653, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    32. Bruno S. Frey, 2008. "Happiness: A Revolution in Economics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262062771, March.
    33. Ana Corbacho & Julia Philipp & Mauricio Ruiz-Vega, 2012. "Crime and Erosion of Trust: Evidence for Latin America," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 76118, Inter-American Development Bank.
    34. Guillermo E. Perry & William F. Maloney & Omar S. Arias & Pablo Fajnzylber & Andrew D. Mason & Jaime Saavedra-Chanduvi, 2007. "Informality : Exit and Exclusion," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6730.
    35. Claudia Senik, 2009. "Direct Evidence on Income Comparisons and their Welfare Effects," Post-Print hal-00696621, HAL.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:gam:jsoctx:v:8:y:2018:i:4:p:99-:d:175912 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    IDB-WP-423;

    JEL classification:

    • I19 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Other
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:idb:brikps:4608. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Felipe Herrera Library). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/iadbbus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.